How To Get Sharpie Off Plastic Without Damaging it

Wondering how to get Sharpie off plastic without damaging it? Here’s what to try.

remove sharpie

There are many ways to remove permanent marker stains from plastic using household staples.

Best Way To Get Sharpie Off Plastic

Rubbing alcohol is one of the best products for removing Sharpie stains. Try this quick and easy method that works on most plastic surfaces.

Materials Needed:

  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Cotton ball
  • Damp cloth
  • Dry cloth
  • Liquid soap

Directions To Get Sharpie Off Plastic:

Soak a cotton ball in rubbing alcohol. Then, gently rub the Sharpie stain. The alcohol will break down the marks and return them to their liquid state. When this happens, you can use a cloth to wipe the marker away.

Repeat these steps. Then, wash the plastic with soapy water and dry it with a cloth. 

How to Remove Sharpie Off Plastic With Another Marker

remove sharpie

Another way to remove Sharpie from plastic is to use a dry-erase marker over top of it. A dry-erase marker works because it has alcohol in it and creates friction, causing the Sharpie to erase. 

Here’s what to do:

  • Color over the Sharpie with a dry-erase marker, covering it well
  • Wipe off with a microfiber cloth or dry eraser

Non-Toxic Ways To Get Sharpie Off Plastic

 There are plenty of non-toxic household products that can remove Sharpie stains. 

  • Mr. Clean Magic Eraser  – Though Mr. Clean Magic Eraser does contain unnatural substances, it is non-toxic. You can use it to remove most surface stains. 
  • Toothpaste (Or Baking Soda) – Toothpaste and baking soda can remove Sharpie stains on most surfaces. Scrub the stain with baking soda-based toothpaste. Then wash it off with a damp cloth.
  • Vinegar – Vinegar is a natural stain remover and cleaner. Use it like you would rubbing alcohol – dabbing it on the Sharpie marks and then wiping it off. 
  • Peroxide  – Dampen a cotton ball with peroxide and use it to wipe away Sharpie from plastic. Rinse with water afterward.

How to Get Sharpie Off Plastic With Chemicals 

remove sharpie

If you’re looking for other methods to get rid of permanent marker stains, these work well:

  • Acetone  – Acetone is stronger than rubbing alcohol, so it’s useful for stubborn stains. Pour some on a cotton ball and use it to wipe away the permanent marker.
  • Hairspray – Hairspray with a high alcohol content will break down Sharpie, making it easy to clean.
  • WD-40 – WD-40 is a solvent capable of eliminating ink stains. Use it in a well-ventilated area, and be careful not to get it on fabric or carpeted surfaces.

Other Solutions

There are many solutions for removing permanent ink stains from plastic.  Here are other solutions that may fit your lifestyle. 

Throw The Item Out

If the marker won’t come off, and the item is of little value to you, it might be time to get rid of it.


If the plastic is paintable, you can give the piece a makeover.  Most paints will cover permanent marker stains, with white being the least effective. 

Try a Strange Household “Cleaners”

Anything with an alcohol base can work to remove Sharpie stains. Hand sanitizer is one option since it’s a gel that’s easier to work with.

Sunscreen, bug spray, and lotion can also be effective.

Use Essential Oils

Some essential oils, like tea tree oil, can remove stains. Use a small amount in a cotton swab and rub the stain away. 


If the plastic is dishwasher-safe, washing it in the dishwasher may work. However, it may take multiple rounds to rub off. Try a method like rubbing alcohol or baking soda before resorting to the dishwasher.

Tips for Cleaning Sharpie Off of Plastic

Here are some tips for the safe removal of Sharpie marks.

Using Harmful Chemicals

If you’re using chemicals to clean, wear gloves and a mask. Open windows to ventilate the room.

Cleaning Children’s Toys

When cleaning items that children use, try natural methods first. A Magic Eraser or rubbing alcohol are both safe and effective. 

How To Get Sharpie Off Wood

Removing permanent markers from wood is like removing Sharpie from plastic. Use greater care since wood is porous and harder to clean. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

Is Sharpie Safe For Skin?

It’s guaranteed that if you have a Sharpie at home, someone will write on their skin. When this happens, don’t panic. The solvents in a Sharpie pen to worry about are more than the pigments.

The pigment will penetrate the skin’s top layer. Once the ink has dried, there’s no health risk. When buying a Sharpie pen, check the label and make sure it says “ACMI” non-toxic.

Most Sharpie Fine Point markers are non-toxic and xylene-free. To be safe, you shouldn’t write on your face with a Sharpie. Your mouth and eyes are most vulnerable.

Sharpie pens contain xylene which is why the pens smell. Although most pens are non-toxic, it’s best not to draw on yourself.

How To Remove Sharpie From Leather?

Permanent marker can be removed from leather with distilled white vinegar. First, apply the vinegar to the stain and let it sit for two minutes. This will allow enough time for vinegar to penetrate the ink stain.  

Use a 1:2 white vinegar and water ratio. After it sits for a few minutes, wipe the mixture away with a damp cloth.

If you can’t remove the ink, it’s because there’s an underlying finish on the leather. As a backup remedy, try oil-free hairspray, nail polish remover, baking soda, or toothpaste. The following should do the trick.

How To Remove Sharpie Stains From Leather Shoes?

There are five easy steps you can use to remove sharpie ink stains you’re your leather shoes. Put acetone nail polish remover on a cotton swab and blot the ink stain. Make sure you use acetone nail polish remover because acetone removes stains.

Rub the stain with a clean cloth. Next, use a wet clean rag to remove the nail polish remover. You’ll notice the stain will fade and then disappear.

Spray a clean rag with cooking spray and wipe the stain from the shoe. Afterward, use a cotton swab and rubbing alcohol and blot the ink stain.  

After you’ve completed the steps, rinse the chemicals from the shoe and let it dry. Depending on the stain, you might have to repeat this process two or three times.

How Can You Remove Sharpie From Rubber?

When removing Sharpie ink stains from rubber, you’ll need rubbing alcohol and a paper towel. For smaller stains, use a cotton swab.

Do not over-saturate the stain. Apply the rubbing alcohol in small dabs and rub it in a circular motion.

How To Get Sharpie Off Plastic Without Damaging It Conclusion

If you can’t remove the stain on your first attempt, try again. Some ink stains require three or four attempts before they’re removed.

Treat Sharpie ink stains as soon as you spot them. The longer an ink stain stays on a surface, the harder it will be to remove it.